Go Cougs!

Yeah, I don’t get the enthusiasm that goes with this, but Benjamin assures me that you have to be a Coug to get it. Whatever.

He’s finally done! 4 looooong years can give you such a crick in the neck! He’s worked hard, I’ve worked hard. I’m just glad he’s done. For now.

We spent some good quality time in the car together as a family. It was just great. Poor Lily had some really bad allergies and needed benadryl for the ride home.  I have a lot of pictures on my phone and those are posted on facebook, but here are some fun pictures of the BIG day.


Oh, I forgot to mention all the walking. I felt like the pioneer children sang as they walked and walked and walked and walked and walked. They had a great attitude. Me? Not so much. And oh, the hills. Lots and lots of hills.



And wait for it…

Yes, typical family photo…


That’s basically what I can get out of Lily nowadays. Wait until she gets older and cringes and asks me why I let her do such stuff? Well, with Lily, there is no “letting” her. She certainly has a mind of her own.


Just us. Kathryn got a taste of freedom this weekend while we were at graduation. My little brother also graduated from college and my parents were with him. Kathryn wanted to stay home and go to prom. So we let her. She loved every minute.

So glad to be done. For now. Go Cougs?


Houston Part II

I think my children are going to kill me. I think Kathryn asks me daily if I’m going to blog. And each day I respond with, Yes! While she mumbles that I’ve said that 8 millions times already.

So like I said, we were there for the weekend. Kjelly had stayed up until 1:30 am waiting for Lily. Our bedroom has a recliner in it so he stayed there. Jeri finally came and put him in bed. However, bright and early (at least for me) he snuck in at around 7am and woke Lily up and they were running. I. Wanted. To. Die. They ran and ran and ran around the house they were so excited to see each other. I went back to sleep.

Once I wasn’t about to kill children and I had some sleep, I decided that we were going to go to the park. This is quite the park. I guess the people in the south take their religion quite seriously. Not that I don’t, but they broadcast it. Like seriously. Who has ever heard of  a Jesus boat? I hadn’t. Not until I went to Houston.


See? You didn’t believe me. *sigh* It’s ok. It was a nice park.

The children had a blast.


Well, at least Erik did. Kjelly wasn’t too happy I was trying to sneak pictures of him. In fact, it down right pissed him off.


Which made me laugh.



Lily was excited to play on the playground. She’s quite the adventurer that child.

After that, we went to a jumping house. With Lily being in gymnastics, she loves to flip her body and run around and all that jazz. So I have a couple of pictures of her before I realized that my battery was dying (and I didn’t bring my charger) and that I was at the end of my memory card (and I didn’t have another one). So I only have a couple of pictures. Waaaaaa!


So Benjamin to the rescue. He went out early the next morning and bought me a battery charger so I could take more pictures. We decided to do the zoo. And since I was driving, and there was no parking, I literally spent two hours in the car looking for a parking space. So I ended up with only a few pictures from that experience and a healthy hate/hate relationship for the houston zoo.



They were feeding the elephants right when we got there.


And then the whole purpose of going to Houston for a couple of days was to celebrate Erik turning 12 and receiving the Aaronic priesthood. You can learn more about that here.

So we took pictures after church. Earl of course, was being… well… Earl. Gotta love him.



The whole family. Then, after we got home, Jeri wanted some more family pictures. IMG_0154IMG_0158

She had to do some fixin’ first.


Their whole family together. Then Jeri wanted some of the little ones together. We had to convince Lily.


Kjelly, not so much. He was willing to take it all off.


I think this is my most favorite picture of them together.

The next day, we decided to go to the beach. Yes, in January. The weather was perfect, 70’s, the water cold and since we know no different being Washingtonian’s, we loved it. The Texan’s think that’s cold weather. So, we had the beach to ourselves. It was great. I put pictures of the beach, on the drive down we saw this:


These southerner’s take their religions seriously. Now, on to beach pictures.




At one point, there were a ton of birds. I kept trying to tell Lily that they were more afraid of her than she was of them and to run after them. Auntie Jeri helped her overcome her fears.  And then Daddy helped her run them away too.



Kjelly and Lily at one point were also wanting to “dig” up bones.


On our way back to Houston, we wanted to stop at a cemetery in Galveston. It was old and it was awesome.


It was an awesome trip. Oh, and I found a sauce named after my brother.


Awesome whirlwind trip.

First Grade!

Things went so much better than last year! Remember this? That didn’t happen this year! Instead we had this:


Of course… until I wanted a picture of her sitting at her desk. Then I got this:

photo 1

I had pulled her out of playing on the playground to take this picture.

My Father Invented the “Selfie”

Except they weren’t called “Selfies” Who knew my father would be leading this thing that teenagers call selfies? I have proof:


And I’m proud to say… *sniff* that my children have followed in his footsteps. IMG_2445IMG_2446IMG_2448IMG_2449IMG_2450IMG_2456



In other news, we went to the zoo. I didn’t catch all the selfies Kathryn took of her and the animals. It was a little much. It was fun. It was Coug day at the zoo. So we got to get in “free” with lunch and face painting. I say “free” because believe me, we paid for it with our tuition. It was a fun day.


We started out with playing in the trees while Benjamin went and paid for parking. IMG_2269

And then we needed to find the teenagers. There was no parking, so we dropped them off and let them start.


It was a pretty fun day. We saw most everything we wanted to see. IMG_2277

For some reason, the teenagers didn’t want me to take pictures of them. Kathryn always made faces, Lauren had her usual “really?” look and Karl just scowled.


Here is Lily visiting her cousins. On her father’s side of the family.


At least I thought it was her dad’s side of the family. Until these two got to jumping and climbing with them. Then I wondered…


This chicken was hilarious. We ventured around the foul area and there was a demonstration of the different birds of prey. He was running away from them. IMG_2304IMG_2310IMG_2311

I thought it was quite interesting the personalities that they had. The vulture decided that he wanted to sun himself.


We then saw the owls.


He took off to get some food.


And then even though it kept going, we needed to go and get some lunch. And some face painting. Lily loves for her face to be painted.


In fact, she’s very serious about it. And then Karl thought he’d be a smart alec.


She had no clue he was doing that. Then Kathryn and I decided we wanted to get our faces painted too. And since it was “free”, I thought, why not?


After lunch, Benjamin was really excited to go and see the Cheetah’s. And this is what happened:


He was having an afternoon nap. Which made Benjamin…


Very sad little boy. Then I thought it would be great to try and get a good picture of all of my peoples. And this is what happened:


Karl has his back turned, that’s all Benjamin can see, he’s trying to make him turn around. Mean while, back at the ranch, Kathryn is showing off, Lily is quite entertained and Lauren has her “really” look going on. Benjamin finally gets Karl to turn around. IMG_2389

Uh, yeah.

So we move on. At this point, I’m now trying really hard to get a good picture of all of them, without them knowing about it. It sorta worked. I was taking pictures of the flamingos when I saw that I had my chance to take a good picture of them. IMG_2397IMG_2399



I think Karl has spidey sense.


The little brat always knows when I’m trying to get a good picture in. At this point, we sort of lost Lily. She was still in the flamingo area, but I didn’t see her. Therefore, I lost her. Don’t worry, I have a loud voice and everyone in the flamingo area knew I was looking for Lily.

The zoo sometimes has “people of walmart” issues. I saw this couple, looked at Lauren and said “So, do you think that they’re together?” I then proceeded to take a picture of them and Lauren got all embarrassed.


Come on, you all have to agree with me. Then this lady almost lost her dress. No joke. I think her head was on backwards…


Ok, back on track, Karl decided to help Lily climb into a small area. This was the best picture of the bunch that I took.


He and Kathryn wanted to look at the bears.


At this point, they think taking pictures of random people doing stupid stuff is a great idea. So Karl took my camera at that point. These are some of his shots. And no, no random people. Just random animals.


Karl also decided that some animals were going to eat him after he saw Lily playing on this:


So, of course, Lily wanted to try too.


By this time, we’re all ready to go. Lily wants to play on some rocks. That’s where all the selfie pictures came from. And then all I wanted to do was get one good picture of Karl. For his mother. But ohhhhhhhhhhhhh noooooooooooooo, he had to be a brat about it.


It was a great day, even if it was tiring!

Our Whirlwind Trip To Houston

Benjamin, Lily and I took a quick weekend trip to Houston this past weekend. Erik turned 12 and was becoming a deacon. It was an exciting time for him. It all started with a long trip to Houston. Loooooooooong trip. Everything started out innocent enough.

We put lots of movies on our tablets. Games, snacks, the works. We got to the airport the two hours before. Lily was excited to watch the airplanes take off and land.


That lasted about 10 minutes. Okay… 1 hour and 50 minutes left….

So we put on a movie. Benjamin bought a splitter so they could both watch the same movie at the same time.


That lasted about 20 minutes. 1 hour and 30 minutes to go. Yeesh… she wanted to leave now Now NOW.

Anyway, we got on the plane, got our seat belts on and Lily was excited! It was pretty cute. We left on time. Everything was great. Lily wanted to color. Then she wanted to watch a movie. So Benjamin started looking for his splitter. And looked. And looked. He went through his backpack. Lily’s backpack. We looked through my carry on, my purse. Nope. Nada. In the mean time while Benjamin is looking for the splitter, Lily is getting impatient. She wants to watch a movie. now. now. now. now. Benjamin is still looking.

Love those flight attendants! They handed out snacks and drinks! Yay! Distraction! Mean while, Benjamin is still looking for his splitter. We’ve come to the conclusion that he’s left it at the airport. Poor Benny and Lily! They can’t watch transformers together!

We land in Las Vegas. We had a two hour layover. Ok, I can do this. Lets get lunch. Check. Lets buy something to shut her up. Check. Lets watch our plane land. Yay! Lets watch the passengers get off. Lets get in line. Lets watch a bunch of people come in and out looking all official. How about we watch the sun set. And watch the clock come and go as to when we were supposed to leave. And watch mechanics fix our BROKEN plane. Tears. Tantrums. And those were only from me. We waited some more. Lily was tired. She told me that she wanted a short cut and we should have only been on one plane. Then she cried. And decided to kick and scream. Then she got so tired, she got the sillies. She decided to do some hand stands. And all I’d like to ask is this. How come it’s ok for a 5 year old to act that way but if I acted that way, I’d get stares, possibly be arrested and sent to the looney bin??


We get to board the plane. FINALLY. And my child who yelled at me every time I told her that she was tired and then yell at me that she wasn’t? Fell asleep before we took off.

We finally arrive in Houston at 3:30 am. Oh my gosh, I was so happy to finally be there. And she stayed up the whole time. Shoot. Me. Now.

And even though it was a quick weekend trip, I have a ton to say and a ton of pictures. So I’ll blog about the rest later. Lily wants some attention.

I’ll Tell Her That I Got a Flat Tire…


3:00 pm

My phone rings. I see it is Monroe school district. I think to myself, I better answer this.

Me: Hello?

Tammy: Sara? It’s Tammy from Maltby elementary.

Me: Hello Tammy.

Tammy: Well, I have your daughter here.

Me: (thinking to myself, of course you have my daughter there.) OK?

Tammy: In the office with me.

Me: OK?

Tammy: Well, you were supposed to pick her up at car drop today.

Me: Yes, and I’m about to leave to come and get her. (School dismissal is at 3:25)

Tammy: Well, you never came and got her.

Me: (Light bulb finally turns on.) OH. MY. HELL. (Every Friday, they have early release. She got out at 2:40) I’M ON MY WAY. I’M SO SORRY! I’LL BE THERE IN 10 MINUTES! Tammy, I totally forgot that it was early release every Friday!

Tammy: Well, it is the middle of the year, I didn’t think I’d have to remind you…

Me: Well, my father is usually the one to get Lily off of the bus and he’s helping one of my brothers’ move and out of the state!

Tammy: Well, I guess we’ll just blame Grandpa then, won’t we? Drive safely.


So I slink into the office where Lily is just sitting on one of the chairs, happy as a clam. Not worried in the least. She did ask me why I was late. Aaaaand, I did tell her that I forgot she had early release. She responds with, “so, can I put the key in the truck? (ignition) I replied with a hearty “Yes!” She knows she’s onto something. She can feel the guilt pouring out of me. “Can we get some ice cream from Dairy Queen too?” “You bet honey. Anything you want.”

And that is the day that I forgot my child at school. Not as good as the school losing Lily earlier in the school year… but a close second.